By Naomi Rabon, NW Fitness Team Trainer

The hardest part of a fitness program is getting started (or getting re-started). Period. Whether that’s picking up a dumbbell and tracking your food intake for the first time, or if it’s after several weeks or months (or maybe even years?) of “taking a break” from exercising and eating healthy, and you are diving back in.


Don’t worry. Don’t fret. Just don’t quit! The only way to get back to it is to, well, literally get back to it. Every day, you just have to show up for yourself. You can’t look at how far you have to go, or how much you’ve “gone sideways,” or wonder how in the world you ended up where you are.

If you go down that rabbit hole line of thinking, you will be giving yourself more of an opportunity to throw in the towel because that type of thinking is an unproductive downward spiral rabbit hole that has no place in your pursuit to get “back on track” towards a healthier, fitter, stronger and overall happier life.


You may be getting back to an exercise routine after being sick, or after a winter funk, or maybe you decided you were tired of feeling the way you are feeling (however that might be) and want to feel stronger, more energized, healthier and have a better self-image. Maybe you have never embarked on a structured exercise and nutrition program before and want to combat one or a few of the following issues affecting your life:

• Loss of interest in usual activities
• Withdrawal from social activities
• Craving for carbohydrates
• Increased need for sleep
• Extreme fatigue and lack of energy
• A “leaden” sensation in the limbs
• Irritability
• Sadness
• Anxiety
• Inability to concentrate
• Body fat gain
• Poor self-image/self esteem

All of the above can severely affect your desire to start or re-start an exercise routine and stick to a healthy eating program. ESPECIALLY if you have been pretty fit in the past and find yourself lacking the strength, exercise endurance and fitness level you once had.

Talk about frustrating and discouraging! That first day getting back to your workouts only reminds you how far off you are from where you used to be.

Just keep showing up!


No doubt we all know what it feels like to get back to it (or start exercising and making healthier food choices for the first time). It’s not fun. But here are a few things you can put into place to get back to it and feeling better, stronger and more resilient about your fitness after a long hiatus:

1. Exercise I know this is the hard part, but drag yourself to the gym and do something. Anything! Even if it’s just lying on a mat and foam rolling, or doing some planks and 15-20 minutes on the treadmill. At this point, just be proud of yourself for making it to the gym and getting some blood flowing.

Make your exercise appointments a part of your weekly regimen, even if they aren’t super eventful or intense or challenging at first. Just showing up and doing some movement is a step in the right direction. Once you start getting into a groove, you’ll be surprised at what you can do with your workouts…as long as you keep showing up!

And if the thought of cardio or strenuous weight lifting is enough to keep you away from the gym right now, then sign up for a yoga or Pilates class for some accountability and low-impact work (though some yoga and Pilates classes can be extremely intense).

According to clinical nutritionist and chiropractor Dr. Axe, staying active increases the production of feel-good chemicals that can help ease depressive feelings and brain fog. In one study, just 30 minutes of walking on a treadmill for 10 consecutive days was enough to produce a significant reduction in depression.

It was also found the frequency and consistency of exercising, rather than the duration or intensity, has the most positive effects — so just keep moving your body in some way several times per week with regular exercise.

2. Eat Healthy According to the Cleveland Clinic, eating a well-balanced diet that includes sufficient amounts of vitamins and minerals as recommended by the FDA will help boost energy even though your body is craving starchy and sweet foods. When we experience vitamin and mineral deficiencies, it can severely affect our hormones, which in turn affect our energy levels and mood.

3. Get Outside It is super hard when it is freezing, but now that things are warming up, expose yourself to that fresh air and sun’s rays. It will help regulate your circadian rhythm (which will help with your sleep quality), and expose you to much-needed natural vitamin D. Taking a walk, hike or going for a little jog or jog/walk intervals can really boost some endorphins and make you feel better, motivated and energized!

We have ALL had to stop and restart our exercise regimen at some point – illness, travel, family emergencies or other life trauma or tragedies – but we have to just get back to it, no matter how hard it might seem in the beginning. Just take it day by day, one workout at a time, putting one foot in front of the other, and you will be back in the regular swing of things in no time. Just keep showing up for yourself and forging ahead!

Tip Me Tuesday: Here Comes The Sun
Tip Me Tuesday: Walk This Way
Tip Me Tuesday: Do Better, Not More
Tip Me Tuesday: Real Nourishment

Naomi-lighterBIOOne of the trainers on Nicole’s elite NW Fitness Training Team, Naomi is a certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. She is a NPC Figure competitor who has been involved in the health and fitness industry for over 12 years.

Go here to find out more about training with the NW Fitness Training Team!